How to get £130 in free cash before Christmas by switching banks

How to get £130 in free cash before Christmas by switching banks

SWITCHING current accounts can be a quick an easy way to make some cash – with some banks offering up to £130 to convince you to sign up.

And with Christmas just around the corner, it's a great way to inject a boost into your finances, meaning you can cover festive costs more easily.

Even better, switching banks is really easy, thanks to the switching guarantee, which means that all your direct debits and standing orders can be swapped over with no effort on your part.

One word of caution, a signing up bonus isn't the only thing worth thinking about, so it's worth researching properly before you take the plunge.

You'll want to consider whether you can get the same overdraft and what rate you'll get, interest on accounts in credit, associated savings accounts and customer service scores.

You also need to check the terms and conditions because many banks will say you need to pay in a certain amount each month or have some direct debits set up to qualify for your bonus.

Check fees as well, as some banks will charge you money each month if you sign up to one of their accounts with perks.

But if you're ready for a change then the signing bonus is definitely a factor worth considering.

Here's the full list of banks offering switching bonuses at the moment and what you need to know before you sign up.

RBS

RBS is offering up to £150 in a switching bonus across three of its current accounts.

You get £100 for the initial switch, but then an extra £50 if you stick around for a year.

You need to open your chosen account online and request to switch by 4.59pm on November 18.

To get the £100 you then need to put at least £1,500 into the account and log into online or mobile banking before December 30 2021.

To get the extra £50 you need to make ten or more transactions between January 2022 until September 2022 – this includes direct debits and everyday spending.

Here's the three accounts you can get the offer on:

Select Account – apply now

  • Free credit score checking
  • Arranged overdraft available
  • Linked savings accounts
  • No monthly fee

Reward Account – apply now

  • Earn £4 a month back in rewards for two or more direct debits of at least £2 each.
  • Earn an extra £1 a month back in Rewards with one mobile app log in.
  • Get 1%+ back in Rewards when you spend: Caffe Nero, EuropCar, Barrhead Travel, Boux Avenue, P&O Ferries and ATG Tickets.
  • Arranged overdraft available (subject to eligibility)
  • You'll need to pay at least £1250 into your account every month.
  • £2 monthly fee

Premier Reward Black – apply now

  • £150 Switch & Stay offer only for existing customers and eligibility criteria applies.
  • Worldwide travel insurance and airport lounge access.
  • 24/7 Black Concierge Service and cinema discount valid at over 250 UK cinemas.
  • UK & European car breakdown cover.
  • Home Emergency Service.
  • £9 a month back in Rewards for two Direct Debits – they need to be at least £4.50 each.
  • £1 a month back in Rewards when you log into the Mobile Banking app.
  • £31 monthly fee

Santander

Santander offers a switching bonus across three of its current accounts including both free basic options and paid for accounts with more perks.

The offer is available for both new and existing customers and you'll need to transfer at least two direct debits, pay in £1000 and register and log in to the mobile app.

You also need to make sure you're paying in at least £500 each month.

Here's the three accounts you can get the offer on:

Everyday account – apply now

  • No interest is paid on your balance
  • Earn up to 15% cashback with retailer offers.
  • No monthly fee to maintain the account

123 Lite – apply now

  • Up to 3% cashback on selected household bills, capped at £5 in each of the three cashback tiers each month
  • Earn up to 15% cashback with retailer offers.
  • £2 monthly fee

123 Current Account – apply now

  • Monthly interest of 0.30% AER/gross (variable) on balances up to £20,000
  • Up to 3% cashback on selected household bills, capped at £5 in each of the three cashback tiers each month.
  • Earn up to 15% cashback with retailer offers.
  • £4 monthly fee

Nationwide

Nationwide also offers a switching bonus on three of its current accounts worth up to £125.

New customers only get £100 each, but existing members will get an extra £25. You can get round this by opening an account, but not switching until the day after the account is fully opened.

You'll get the cash within 10 calendar days. Here are the three accounts that qualify for the switching bonus:

FlexAccount – apply now

  • No monthly fee

FlexDirect – apply now

  • 2% AER (1.98% gross a year) fixed interest for 12 months on balances up to £1,500 (it’s 0.25% AER variable once the year is up). You’ll need to pay in at least £1,000 a month to get the rates.
  • Interest-free arranged overdraft for 12 months
  • No monthly fees

FlexPlus – apply now

  • Travel insurance for you and family
  • Mobile phone insurance
  • Breakdown cover for UK and Europe
  • Fee free cash withdrawal and transactions abroad
  • £13 monthly fee

HSBC

HSBC is offering a £110 switching bonus as well as a £30 Uber Eats voucher or The Dining Out Gift Card.

It's only available for new customers and you can't have had an account with sister bank First Direct since 2018 either.

You also need to pay in £1,750 each month – which is the equivalent of a £25,600 salary. You'll get the bonus within 40 days of switching.

HSBC Advance Account – apply now

  • You can save between £25-£250 each month and earn 1.00% AER/gross
  • Money-saving offers on shopping, days out, eating out and more
  • No monthly fees

Lloyds

Lloyds offers a £100 switching bonus to people taking out either of its Club accounts.

Both options have fees, but you can have the charges waived on the Club Lloyds option if you pay in at least £1,500 a month.

The deadline is October 19, andits only available for new joiners.

Club Lloyds – apply now

  • Lifestyle benefit of either: 12 digital movie rentals, six cinema tickets , a magazine subscription or a Gourmet Society membership
  • Credit interest on balances from £1 up to £5,000, when you pay out twodifferent Direct Debits each month (0.6% on £1 to £4,000 and 1.5% on the bit between £4,000 and £5,000)
  • Access to regular saving schemes paying 1% or more for 12 months.
  • Up to 15% cashback with retail partners
  • £3 monthly fee – waived if you pay in £1,500 a month

Club Lloyds Platinum – apply now

  • Lifestyle benefit of either: 12 digital movie rentals, six cinema tickets , a magazine subscription or a Gourmet Society membership
  • Credit interest on balances from £1 up to £5,000, when you pay out twodifferent Direct Debits each month (0.6% on £1 to £4,000 and 1.5% on the bit between £4,000 and £5,000)
  • Access to regular saving schemes paying 1% or more for 12 months.
  • Up to 15% cashback with retail partners
  • AA breakdown cover
  • Mobile phone insurance
  • Worldwide travel insurance
  • £21 monthly fee plus £3 monthly fee – (the £3 fee is waived if you pay in £1,500 a month)

Virgin Money

While Virgin does offer switching bonuses they're in the form of vouchers rather than cold, hard cash.

If you sign up, you'll be sent a 150 Gift Card and link to the Virgin Experience Days site within 14 days, once you’ve met all the qualifying terms.

Your £150 doesn’t have to be redeemed in the one go and you can top it up if you fancy something bigger.

M Plus Account – apply now

  • 2.02% AER interest rate, paid monthly, on balances up to £1,000.
  • Linked M Plus Saver paying 0.35%
  • Fee-free cash withdrawals and spending abroad
  • No monthly fee

How to switch bank accounts

If you've picked an account and are ready to switch, here's our step-by-step guide to getting started.

  1. Switching is easy. Under the switching service, swapping banks should take seven working days. That includes all your payments, direct debits and standing orders being moved too. Just open your new account and then ask your new provider to close your old account using the switch service.
  2. Make sure you are eligible. Most accounts have certain requirements, such as paying in a minimum amount of cash each month.
  3. Watch your overdraft. Check your new bank will offer you the same limit — and does not have higher costs for using it.

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